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Birmingham 2022 'de-risks' Commonwealth Games – scraps plans for £520m athletes' village

By Tom Walker    12 Aug 2020
The £520m development would have provided a home for around 6,500 athletes and officials during the Games / Birmingham 2022
We are making this decision now, with two years to go, to de-risk the project
– Ian Reid

The organising committee of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games have shelved plans to create an athletes' village in the Perry Barr area of the city.

The £520m development would have provided a home for around 6,500 athletes and officials during the Games and was due for completion in early 2022. Post games, the development was set to be converted into more than 1,400 homes, forming the first phase of a long-term regeneration plan for Perry Barr.

Athletes and team officials will now be housed in three ‘campus’ villages at The University of Birmingham, The University of Warwick, and The NEC Hotel Campus during the 2022 Games.

The three-site campus model will be delivered within the overall Games budget of £778m, with organisers insisting the Games "remain on track to be delivered on time and on budget".

The organising committee said the decision was made after a review of the impact of the global health pandemic on the 2022 Games – and how the organiser could "de-risk" Games delivery.

It was deemed that, with a shorter than normal timeframe for delivery of the Games, the new build accommodation site had "very little scope to withstand the impact COVID-19" has had on construction.

“These are challenging times for all of us and delivering a major multi sports event during this period has meant we have needed to collaborate effectively, be pragmatic to change, and remain realistic about the challenges we face," said Ian Reid, CEO of Birmingham 2022.

"We recognise that this new model is a move away from the historic norm and we are grateful for the support shown by our partners across the Commonwealth Games Associations.

Birmingham and the West Midlands is extremely fortunate to have superb alternate facilities and we are making this decision now, with two years to go, to de-risk the project, ensure delivery for athletes and teams and secure the legacy of new housing and transport infrastructure in Perry Barr."

The larger Perry Barr Regeneration Scheme – of which the athletes village was a central part – will still be delivered and is set to provide the area with new housing and transport infrastructure.

Birmingham 2022  Commonwealth Games  Perry Barr  athletes' village  University of Birmingham  University of Warwick  The NEC  
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